A dumb Lever.
At the time that Francis I.,
, was taken prisoner at the battle of Paris
, one of his officers, the valorous Chevalter Beauregard
, smitten by the charms of an Italian lady named Aurelfa, of a noble family, declared his passion to her. Aurelia
, although she was flattered by the declaration, refused his, pretensions, on the ground of the levity of the French
character and their national indiscretion.
The extreme violence of the Chevalier
's love urged him to propose to the lady to put his constancy to any proof she should think proper.
accepted the proposition, and engaged to marry him if he would consent to remain dumb for six months. The Chevaller
promised, and from that moment never opened his lips.
He returned to Paris
among his friends and relations, who lamented the singular infirmity he had brought with him from the army.
expressed only by signs.
Physicians were sent for, but he refused their assistance.
The captive king was at length restored to his people, but his joy on his return was diminished by the unfortunate Chevaller
, who was honored by the king's particular friendship.
Francis sent his best doctors to his favorite, who this time accepted the medicine, but with no effect.
The king went so far as to employ the charlatans, who, in his time, as well as the present, pretended to possess specifics for all evils.
He even called in those who dealt in charms, but all to no purpose.
All the court were hopeless of his cure, when a fair fortune-teller presented herself, and wrote to the king that she would undertake the restoration of the Chevalier to his speech.
Being sent for she was introduced to Beauregard
, when she addressed him thus:
immediately recognized in the stranger his beloved Aurelia
, who had long witnessed his constancy and devotion.
Francis was sensibly affected at the event, and presented him with a rich marriage portion.
It is not now-a-days that men become dumb for love, though many keep silent for interest.
There are few Beauregards in the present age.